Originally posted 10/20/2008, titled “Of Plywood And Poetry.” For Bill Macmillan.
The other day
I ripped a plywood plank in half
with a jigsaw to make a shelf
to hold books, and that was good.
To deny that there was a pleasure
in the vibration from the tool,
to deny that
there was suffering when the splinters
flew into me from the cut,
to deny that the books on the shelf are better
and more present for me because
I can tell you of the work I put into
keeping them safe? This would be lying.
Smug judges tell me to keep
the poems about writing poetry
to myself. I say
kill the judging and dig
that I can’t speak of God
without speaking now and then
is an act of poetry,
the writing of a poem,
even the building
of a shelf to hold